Hoes are one of the most versatile tools in a gardener’s armoury – they clear and shape soil ready for planting and seed sowing, as well as removing weeds. With such a wide range of hoes available, it’s hard to know which one to use for which job. Here is a handy guide from WOLF-Garten to explain exactly why they all have a place in the garden.
Dutch Hoe: for slicing weeds
Dutch hoes are ideal for weeding; just a gentle sweeping over the surface of the soil with the flat blade will cut off weed seedlings. The push motion across the ground slices through the weed under the surface.
Whilst it will slice annuals, which will curl up and die, it is best used on young weeds, in previously cultivated soil. A Dutch hoe can also be used by turning it over to make a seed drill in which to sow seeds.
Push/Pull Weeder: to slice and remove weeds
Whereas the Dutch hoe works in a push motion, the push/pull weeder does exactly what its name suggests! It works in two direction to do twice the work, with half the effort. This allows you to work close to the plants and remove weeds easily and effortlessly as it repeatedly lifts and smooths the soil in both directions. Push forwards to slice the weed, and pull back to remove it.
Swoe Style Hoe: for small spaces without damaging plants
This is one to use when weeding in confined spaces. It works with a push and pull action to sever weeds amongst narrow rows of plants and vegetables. The one sided blade grants easy access to tightly packed plants in confined spots without damaging the plants.
Draw Hoe: for trenches and prepping for seed sowing
This is a great, general hoe that can be used to dislodge weeds by the root. It has a downward facing blade set at a right angle to the shaft and is designed to be used in a chopping or slicing action. It is best used in harder ground and can also be used to dig shallow trenches (or drawing a trench, hence its name) and to then cover seeds.
Double Hoe: the jack of all trades
These come in a variety of designs. One option is to go for one with a flat, sharp blade on one side and sharp tines on the other. The flat blade will act like the Draw Hoe, dislodging weeds and mounding and shaping soil, whilst the tines cultivate and break up the ground. The other option is a Double Hoe with a pointed blade on one side, which is perfect for creating seed drills, furrowing and backfilling.
The bladed side cutting through the weeding and breaks up the soil, and the forked side can then be used for cultivating and aerating the soil.
As a long-standing producer of garden hoes, WOLF-Garten prides itself of its range offering something for every weeding task. To support the above options, its hoes are available in a variety of sizes allowing for use in all types and sizes of gardens from allotment patches and flower beds to large borders and planters. They are also part of the WOLF-Garten multi-change® system, granting gardeners the choice of 15 different handles to attach the tools to. There are small handles for working close to the weeds, or longer ones for standing to clear larger areas.
To view these products, and other items in the WOLF-Garten range, visit www.wolfgarten-tools.co.uk. You can also find WOLF-Garten on Twitter at @WGGardentools and on Facebook by searching for WOLF-Garten Garden Tools.